Dec. 3 – Clint Smith – Above Ground – Best Poetry Book! [Advent Calendar]

The Englewood Review of Books
Best Books of 2023
Advent Calendar
December 3


*** Best Poetry Book of 2023!

Above Ground: Poems

Clint Smith

Hardback: Little, Brown & Co., 2023
Buy Now: [ BookShop ] [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ] [ Audible ]

“I’m so grateful that Clint Smith’s poems remind us of our interdependence on each other—on chrysanthemums, jellyfish, plankton, to note just a few of his magnificent poetic negotiations—all while turning his wide and generous eyes to fatherhood. This book is an illumination I sorely needed of both the outdoors and the quotidian—a joyful embrace and legacy of bright language and poignant questions.”
―Aimee Nezhukumatathil, author of World of Wonders
Early in the collection, in the poem “By Chance,” Smith asks what might be the thesis of the volume: what is the difference between science and a miracle, and how do we find the difference?  In the final poem, “Look at That Pond,” Smith seems to answer himself with an invitation to wonder: “Look at the fish swimming under its silver surface. Look how the/surface shimmers like sound. Look how the fish follow one another,/ how their bodies bend like strings of a harp.” He writes of the plants guarding the pond, the swamp the pond will become, the children of the future who will visit it, and the plankton that create the oxygen that keep us all, miraculously, alive. … Look at all this improbable survival, his poems remind us.  Call it luck, or divine intervention, or wonder that keeps us going. “My life is made possible by trillions of tiny mysteries,” Smith writes. “I exist/because of so many things I’ll never see.”
– from our review by Katie Karnehm-Esh
[ READ the Full Review ]


*** WATCH a reading of poems from this book
and discussion of the book:


<<<<<< PREVIOUS DAY’s Book


[ Return to the Advent Calendar ]


Reading for the Common Good
From ERB Editor Christopher Smith

"This book will inspire, motivate and challenge anyone who cares a whit about the written word, the world of ideas, the shape of our communities and the life of the church."
-Karen Swallow Prior

Enter your email below to sign up for our weekly newsletter & download your FREE copy of this ebook!
We respect your email privacy

In the News...
Christian Nationalism Understanding Christian Nationalism [A Reading Guide]
Most AnticipatedMost Anticipated Books of the Fall for Christian Readers!
Funny Bible ReviewsHilarious One-Star Customer Reviews of Bibles